i was reading another post about baking temps and saw some people mention wrapping their pans with damp towels during baking... can anyone ellaborate on that for me? how do you do it? what does it change about the cakes? thanks!
Using damp towels around the pans is a substitute for using bake-even strips. You cut strips of old towels, wet them and pin them around the sides of the cake pan. I would do the strip twice as wide as the side of the cake pan and fold it in half so that you have a double thickness (i.e., if your pan is 2" tall, cut a towel strip that is 4" wide and long enough to wrap around the circumference of your pan--fold the 4" in half to make a double thickness 2'' wide wrap). Make sure you wet the towel strips completely and squeeze out the excess water. Use a safety pin or similar to secure around the pan. It helps with even baking and not getting as big of a dome on top of the cake.
And remember to overlock your strips - fraying towel easily catches fire!
I always wrap the tins of my larger sponges, and all my rich fruits with a double layer of brown (parcel) paper around the outside tied with string. I've seen pictures of people doing this with newspaper...but surely the newsprint would rub off on my fingers???
I do re use the paper...and one piece will do for about 10 bakes.
I will also line between the tin and the cake mixture with greaseproof paper.
Hope this helps.